Kenya Without Orphans

Total Population: 47.5 million
Total Children under the age of 18: 26.2 million

The situation of children in Kenya

Approximately 3.6 million Kenyan children are orphans or otherwise classified as vulnerable. Of these, 646,887 children have lost both parents, while 2.6 million children have lost at least one parent (one million of these to AIDS). Other children are vulnerable due to poverty, harmful cultural practices, family breakdown, abandonment, natural disasters, ethnic and political conflict, and poor care arrangements.

The Challenges:

Communities in Kenya have traditionally responded to children without parental care by placing them informally in the care of extended family or community members. However, with increasing socio-economic pressures and weakening family structures, this kinship care mechanism is under threat, and many children are at risk of maltreatment. The predominant formal alternative care arrangements are placements in children's charitable institutions or other institutional care.

WWO Kenya works on:

  • Prevention and Intervention. In mid-August 2021, WWO Kenya commenced conversations with the Association of Evangelicals in Africa (AEA) on how state and non-state actors can be engaged to best respond to the Street Children problem in Nairobi. So far, two strategy meetings have been successfully held, and more encounters with key stakeholders have been scheduled, even as we seek guidance from the WWO global office on this bold and audacious undertaking.
  • Training and Technical Support. WWO Kenya in liaison with Child in Family Focus – Kenya recently reviewed a Charitable Children's Institution in Githunguri – Kiambu County, intending to support its transitioning journey from Institutional Care to Family-Based Care. Engagement with this orphanage continues, and we look forward to the rollout of subsequent processes that will engage the children, government, the church, and other stakeholders in supporting the transition.
  • Collaboration. WWO Kenya, together with SOS Children's Villages (Kenya), Fondazione L’Abero Dela Vita, and Child in Family Focus, have this year (2021) joined forces to work alongside the Department of Children’s Services in piloting foster care in Ngong Sub County of Kenya. The Foster Collaborative is at its initial stages. It will build staff capacity in ten charitable children's institutions to implement foster care in children's interest under their residential care. The collaboration will also work together to pilot Emergency Foster Care.  

Other Information about Orphaned and Vulnerable Children and Family Care in Kenya

Better Care Network Information on Family-Based Care in Kenya

More information for prayer at Operation World


"Source: UNICEF, Humanium, SOS Children's Villages International".

National Stories

Family Reunification Model in Kenya

Sam Rich is a film producer, global advocate for children in families, and helped produce the Lost Kites film, which debuted at the WWO Global Forum. He recently spent time in Kenya documenting the work of Agape to learn and share how one ministry is successfully reuniting children with biological families.
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